By Ruthie Robison The Winston County Journal
The Nanih Waiya Warriors picked up their sixth consecutive victory last Friday night.
The Warriors continued their winning ways defeating the East Oktibbeha Titans in a Class 1A, Region 3, District 4 battle, 28-6.
Nanih Waiya entered the meeting on their home field and overpowered their opponent throughout the game.
The Warrior win ensures a spot in the Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 1A South half playoffs. The first round of playoff action begins Nov. 9.
The first quarter of Nanih Wayia’s Friday night throwdown with East Oktibbeha proved to be beneficial for the Warriors.
Sophomore running back Jarmarlo Smith topped off a Nanih Waiya drive with a run from two yards out. The Warriors gained an early lead, 6-0.
The second quarter was offensively quiet from each opposing side. And Nanih Waiya took their 7 unanswered points to halftime.
In the third quarter, the Warriors added another scoring play to board doubling their lead over the Titans. Smith made a dash from the 30-yard line to the end zone. Smith followed with a run successfully converting the extra points.
Nanih Waiya continued to score in the fourth quarter.
Smith added his third touchdown of the game with a 37-yard touchdown run. Higginbotham added the extra point for the Warriors. Nanih Waiya had a 21-0 advantage over East Oktibbeha with just minutes left in the game.
Higginbotham capped the Warrior scoring after punching in a run from the one-yard line.
Higginbotham followed his own touchdown run with the point-after- touchdown giving Nanih Waiya a 28-0 lead.
The East Oktibbeha offense finally woke up late in fourth quarter after being silenced by the Warrior defense throughout the entire game. With a 43-yard touchdown pass, the Titans finally answered back. Nanih Waiya blocked East Oktibbeha from a successful run for the extra points.
On the offensive side of the ball, Smith led the rushing attack with 14 carries for 177 yards with three touchdowns. Deandrea Holmes followed with eight carries for 54 yards while freshman Ken McQueen had four carries for 20 yards. Higginbotham had two carries for eight yards with one touchdown. On the defensive side of the ball, Aaron Ellingburg led with seven stops and four stops for a loss of yards. Sophomore linebacker Marcellous Grady had six stops with one for a loss of yards and one fumble recovery. Junior defensive back Stewart Ball had five stops and one interception.
The Warriors now have a 6-4 overall record and a 5-2 record in division play. Nanih Waiya holds the fourth spot in region standings.
With the playoffs just week away, the Warriors will have to focus on the last game on their schedule first.
Nanih Waiya will take a short trip across Winston County to Noxapater, the home of the defending Class 1A champion Tigers.
The Thursday night game is a much-anticipated, rivalry matchup for both teams.
The Tigers have been unstoppable this season on both sides of the ball and will be a tough contender for the Warriors to face.
Noxapater has an 8-2 overall record and is undefeated in district play. The Tigers recently overwhelmed the West Oktibbeha Timberwolves, 57-6.
Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. this Thursday night.